Cornflake, Pecan, and Marshmallow Topped Sweet Potato Casserole



Next stop on the hubby and I's trip across Spain was Seville. This was my favorite city that we visited! It was also perfect timing as the hubby and I got to celebrate our anniversary in one of the top 10 most romantic cities in the world. And when you visit this city, you will instantly know why....it is just so sweet :) The hubby and I spent most of our time just holding hands, wandering around and enjoying the beauty!


It was in Seville that we got to see the COOLEST site ever! We visited the Catedral de Sevilla which was, yes beautiful BUT it housed the TOMB OF CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS! Yes, I said Chistopher Columbus....the 1492, Christopher Columbus sailed the ocean blue...guy. I was so excited and oddly star struck! It was crazy! To be able to stand next to and see his tomb was a history pseudo-nerd's dream :)


We went on a walking tour of the city which was really great but A LOT of walking. We got to see the Plaza de Torros where the bull fighting occurs, Alcazar (which had this gorgeous bath house in it), and old tobacco plantation house and commerce center, and Seville's colorful neighborhood.


Seville is where the hubby and  I had some of our favorite dishes while in Spain. Just another reason why I loved the city so much. Everything about the food was beautiful and delicious. I am drooling now, just thinking of the food that I enjoyed there.





And it was the only place I have seen cupcakes on a stick. Okay...not technically cupcakes, more like peep cupcakes...but still pretty darn nifty!


Spain was definitely not the hubby's favorite. He loved Southeast Asia so much more. And I agree, but I am so glad we got to experience Seville. It is definitely a gem in Spain. Also, when you think Spain, tourists always go to the major cities (Barcelona and Madrid), which don't get me wrong, the hubby and I went to also. But it was always the small cities that the hubby and I enjoyed the most.

Happy Day 2 in the countdown to Turkey Day! I thought I would mix up our savory with some sweet (with one of the longest titles everrrrr): cornflake, pecan, and marshmallow topped sweet potato casserole. And its the first post which I did not technically make, one of my Thanksgiving guests made it. Since they are not a culinary genius or one that enjoys cooking, I can only guess that this recipe is easy peasy to make :) I do know that everyone enjoyed this casserole and it was eaten up quickly!

One note: in the picture, we had marshmallows which melted a bit during baking so I added fresh marshmallows. Though looking back, I do wish I toasted the tops a bit. 






CORNFLAKE, PECAN, AND MARSHMALLOW TOPPED SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE
Adapted slightly from My Recipes
INGREDIENTS

Preheat Oven to 400F Degrees

FOR THE SWEET POTATO LAYER
2 1/2 pounds of sweet potatoes or about 5 medium sweet potatoes
2 tbsp. butter, softened
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1/2 c. of milk
1 large egg, room temperature
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

FOR THE TOPPINGS
1 1/4 c. cornflakes, crushed
1/2 chopped pecans
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1 tbsp. melted butter
1 1/4 c. mini marshmallows

DIRECTIONS

Bake sweet potatoes on a lined and greased baking sheet for 1 hour or until tender. Allow to cool. Then peel and mash sweet potatoes. Reduce the oven heat to 350F degrees.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, mix on medium speed, sweet potatoes, butter, brown sugar, milk, egg and vanilla extract until smooth. Grease an 8x8 or 7x11 baking dish with cooking spray and spoon sweet potato mixture into baking dish. Set aside.

In a medium bowl combine cornflakes, pecans, brown sugar and melted butter. Sprinkle over the sweet potato mixture in diagonal rows about 2 inches apart. Bake for 30 minutes. Allow the casserole to cool for 15-20 minutes. Then sprinkle mini marshmallows in the alternate rows between cornflakes and bake until marshmallows are slightly toasted and golden brown on the top. Watch carefully as marshmallows can overcook quickly. 

Enjoy,


Thanksgiving Boudin Stuffing



If you have been following along, I just finished my recap of the hubby and I's adventures in Barcelona. First, I am not sure I mentioned it before but the hubby and I went to Spain to celebrate our two year anniversary.


He's pretty excited about us being married for two years...hahaha. We took a sleeper train from Barcelona to Granada -- an 11 hour trip. The concept of a sleeper train was much cooler in my head then it actually ended up being. But it was nice to sleep while traveling to our next destination.


We visited the Catedral de Granada. This was one of the prettiest cathedrals we saw, from the bottom to the top. Absolutely breathtaking.


We also went to Alcaiceria, which was a shopping area that used to be an old silk market. Super cool!


But the best was an all day trip to Alhambra. We roamed the beautiful gardens and grounds surrounding Alhambra as well. And the view from the castle was stunning.



And we continued enjoying lots of yumminess. The hubby finally got to enjoy horchata, while I enjoyed all the goodies offered in local bakeries.



And then we said bye to Granada. Definitely one of my two favorite places in Spain. If you ever go to Spain, this city is definitely worth visiting :)

Last year, I hosted Thanksgiving dinner for my sister and cousin. Justin, his girlfriend Kadi, Luke and Sophia also came by. I cooked up a storm and got us a deep fried Cajun turkey. I could not fry a turkey myself, as I live in an apartment. This year, I want to share some of my favorite recipes in my one week countdown to TURKEY DAY! Gobble Gobble!

Since I am married to my wonderful Cajun country boy, not only did I pick up a deep fried Cajun turkey, but I decided to make a boudin stuffing because he loves boudin. If you do too, you should see my other boudin recipes I have shared. My sister and cousin have never had boudin before so I thought this would be a great way to introduce them to it. Everyone loves stuffing, but adding boudin just makes it even better :) Check it out!






THANKSGIVING BOUDIN STUFFING
Adapted from Savory Sweet Life
 
INGREDIENTS

 Preheat Oven to 350F Degrees

4 tbsp. of butter
1 medium onion chopped 
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground sage
1 tsp. dry thyme 
4 links of boudin 
10 c. of unseasoned bread cubes 
1 1/2 c. of broth (chicken or vegetable)
1 egg, whisked

DIRECTIONS

Heat butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute onions, salt, sage and thyme until onions are slightly browned, translucent and fragrant. Add in the filling of the boudin (remove from casing), mixing until warmed. Turn off heat and add bread cubes. Gently fold the bread cubes into the onion-boudin mixture. Continuing folding in the bread cubes while also slowly pouring the broth and egg over the cubes making sure the broth and egg are evenly incorporated throughout the stuffing mixture.  Be gentle, as the cubes may break apart.

Grease a 9x13 baking dish. Pour uncooked stuffing into the baking dish and bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown.

Enjoy,

Cannoli Cups



O-M-Gee! Let's take a step back and realize that I just posted twice in a week without disappearing. ::shock face:: ::brushing shoulder off:: Okay, I am a dork and I'll stop. But I am pretty excited. I am trying to stay optimistic about continuing to blog. So I left off sharing about my trip to San Juan, Puerto Rico and now let's begin the recap of Spain! Starting with.....BARCELONA!

We arrived in Barcelona after a 2 hour flight to Newark, a 4 hour layover, and a 7 hour flight to Madrid. We then caught a bus to the Ave (fast train not avenue) which took us to Barcelona where we took the subway to our hotel....basically I was exhausted. After catching up on some zzzzz's the hubby and I just wandered around the neighborhood. I had paella (because if you go to Spain you have to try paella) and then we ended the evening, in the only way I could -- with GELATO!


The next day we went off on our adventures. We started with a stroll through the Ramblas. Though after all the reading I did, I have to admit I was paranoid about becoming a victim of pick-poketing. Thankfully, nothing went wrong. We then went to the Cathedral of Barcelona....gorgeous (though almost every single cathedral we went to in Spain was stunning).


We also spent some of our time in Barcelona, viewing the beautiful architectural works of Gaudi -- Sagrada Familia, Casa Batllo, and the Gingerbread Houses in Parc Guell.



One of our favorite places in Barcelona was definitely La Boqueria. It is a giant open market of AMAZINGNESS. Delicious food around every corner. Restaurants, delies, goodies...everything. I enjoyed more gelato while the hubby drank delicious juices (dragon fruit). It is definitely something you have to see and experience.


The hubby surprised me by taking me to the coolest museum ever. The Museu de la Xocolata! A chocolate museum! The entry tickets were chocolate bars! And all the exhibits were made in chocolate.....BEST.MUSEUM.EVERRRR! This was a gorilla made entirely of white chocolate.



And there you have it folks: an abbreviated version of our trip to Barcelona! And now for some dessert. I have had a streak of non-dessert recipes and wanted to post something sweet! If it was not obvious "For the Love of Dessert" started as a dessert only blog, until I got married and then had to learn to make "real food" ::sad face:: hahaha. A little while ago I went to a pot luck dinner at Justin's. I, of course, said I would make dessert.

Whenever I make desserts for parties, I have specific selection criteria when searching for dessert recipes: (1) looks pretty -- pretty foods attract people to eat it, (2) bite size -- people won't eat large chunks of food at a get together, especially if it is not a sit down dinner, (3)  easy peasy, and (4) of course -- delicious! These cannoli cups were all of that. When I fist saw them, I was convinced they would be hard to make, but thankfully I was wrong. They were a huge hit at the party and finished in no time!







CANNOLI CUPS
Adapted slightly from Gimme Some Oven

INGREDIENTS

Preheat Oven to 350F Degrees

15 oz. container of ricotta cheese
1/4 c. cornstarch (sifted)
1 1/3 c. heavy cream or whole milk
1/2 c. powdered sugar + extra for dusting
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 package of wonton wrappers (need about ~40 wrappers)
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
2 c. of mini chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS

In a medium bowl whisk together 1 cup of the heavy cream (or milk) and cornstarch until smooth. Allow the mixture to sit for about 20 minutes. Then transfer the mixture to a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Cover the cannoli filling with  plastic wrap, making sure the plastic wrap touches the surface of the filling. Allow mixture to cool to room temperature. I placed it in the refrigerator.

Meanwhile, lightly coat a mini-muffin tray with cooking spray. Then press wonton wrappers into the into the mini-baking wells to form cups. Make sure the wonton wrapper is centered when pressing down and that the corners are folded outward. Bake for 10-15 minutes until cups are golden brown. Allow to cool to room temperature. Once the ricotta filling has cooled, fold in the cinnamon and continuing mixing until smooth.

Using a pastry bag (or a spoon if you do not have a pastry bag, although it won't look as "pretty") pipe the filling into each wonton cup. Garnish with mini chocolate chips and powdered sugar. Keep refrigerated.

Enjoy,